Premier League defending champions Leicester City welcome West Ham United to the King Power Stadium in Saturday afternoon’s Premier League clash, but could well come unstuck given their woeful form of late coupled with the resurgence of the Hammers.
City’s title defence has been nothing short of a nightmare with the Midlands outfit currently embroiled in a relegation battle just months after lifting the Premier League crown, and a travel-happy West Ham side boasting a run of consecutive wins might well take all three points against Leicester on Saturday as a result.
Claudio Ranieri’s Leicester City side are currently 16th in the Premier League table with 17 points from 18 games this season, having suffered defeat in three of their last five ahead of Saturday’s visit of West Ham.
The Foxes were reliant on their home form to keep them out of the bottom three but their results at the King Power Stadium have started to spiral – winning just one of their last four games in their own backyard.
Leicester are enduring a three-game winless run overall in the Premier League, and their three-point lead over the relegation zone could be narrowed if they fall short again on Saturday.
As for their opposition, West Ham United are five places and five points better off than the Foxes. Slaven Bilic’s side boast three consecutive wins in the Premier League and have suffered just one defeat on the road since October.
After a slow start to the season, the Hammers are back on track and look like a side destined for a top-half finish come May.
United have lost only to elite opponents such as Everton, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal since September while drawing with Manchester United and Liverpool, and with points picked up in their last three away games to United, Liverpool and Swansea City, West Ham will fancy their chances against Leicester.
No longer are sides playing an expansive game against City to risk being ripped apart on the counter-attack, and no longer are sides being bullied at set pieces by the Foxes.
West Ham can physically stand up to any team in the Premier League this season so Leicester have little in the way of aerial and physical superiority. The visitors have also been keeping the conceded tally low in recent weeks, shipping just once in their last three.
Leicester have failed to score in two of their previous three in the Premier League. Despite picking up four points in their two meetings with Bilic’s side last season, this weekend’s clash is likely to yield a different outcome.
Leicester most recently lost at home to Everton while West Ham United enjoyed an away victory over Swansea City. The trend could well continue at the King Power Stadium on Saturday, potentially seeing the Hammers moving three places up the table and just one point off seventh-placed Everton.
Leicester risk being dragged into the bottom three if they can’t arrest the slide, but a win could see them double their lead over the sides in the relegation zone.